The transfer window closes in 4 days time, and to many it would appear as though Sunderland still have a lot to do if they are to be ready to battle for success this coming season.
Interviewed by the local media, Grayson noted in recent days that:
I have not had loads of money to spend. I left Preston by spending just over £1m and that squad is worth more than £20m now. That’s what I try to do. Recruit and then improve on the training pitch. That’s what I will try to do here.
Sometimes a successful window can be the ones where you keep people as well. If you don’t have to sell players or you’ve managed to bring players in for low amounts or on frees and loans who you can develop on the training pitch, you can get great satisfaction from that.
Grayson’s quotes could potentially suggest that fans shouldn’t expect to see much investment in the coming week. However, it’s clear for all to see that Grayson isn’t the man in charge of the purse strings - that task lays at the feet of Martin Bain.
Hopefully they [the fans] trust me. Hopefully they can see what’s required and I’m trying to be as honest as I can be in terms of where we are with deals.
Hopefully they see the ones that come in are making an impact, whether it’s Aiden McGeady with his ability, James Vaughan with his hard work or other players, you’re judged on your signings as a manager and you hope to get more right than wrong.
The fans certainly don’t hold any ill will to Grayson after his display in the market thus far. It’s clear to see he’s work on an incredibly limited budget, and if the higher ups at the club can’t see the need for investment, then that’s not exactly the manager’s fault.
Time will tell if Grayson is given money to strengthen.
Grayson wasn’t too happy with his side’s performance yesterday, singling out a lack of desires as a key factor for the disappointing defeat:
Against the run of play we concede and from there on Barnsley deserved to win, because they did the basics better, they ran further, harder, put their bodies on the line. That’s what it is about, too many of ours didn’t do that after the opening third.
When asked about fans showing their displeasure at the final whistle, Grayson also acknowledged that his players deserved their chastising from the 4,000 travelling Mackems:
Rightly so. I’ve no problems with that. We could have been in front but Barnsley hung in there, did what is required to win games. They won the second balls, scrapped and knew somewhere along the line they’d get the chances to score.
It ruins my plans for the next two weeks, I hate seeing a team cave in as such. We have to make sure we put things right, I'm passionate about what we do and what the club means to the travelling supporters, we want to give them something to cheer about. It's alright ]he players] enjoying the trips to Norwich when it goes well but when you're under pressure, as we told them we would be because of how hard Barnsley, you've got to dig deep and do what's required to win, we didn't today.
Skipper Lee Cattermole also had harsh words for his men after their second three goal loss in the space of a week:
We lacked quality on the ball and we lacked discipline without it.
I think there was a bit of weakness there [after the first goal] and people were perhaps feeling a little bit sorry for themselves, and suddenly the game was over despite being the better side.
We had to keep doing what we’d been doing and play our way back into the game, but we couldn’t do that today. It is a massive wake up call for us.
Heading into an international break gives Grayson and the majority of his players the chance to regroup and contemplate how they can move forward in a positive manner - hopefully the fighting talk from gaffer and skipper translates to fight and commitment on the pitch in a fortnight.